Welcome to my blog! It’s been a shorter than usual week for me, but I’ve managed to cram quite a lot in and learnt more about the power of TV
Spent a long time trying to catch up with emails (I’m definitely getting better at this!). Then CEO David and I had lunch with a social impact investor from Europe. We were really impressed by her and as a potential investor, she seemed a very good fit – we’ll find out very soon if she thought the same.
Later, I started putting together a range of products for a Channel 4 documentary about dementia. The documentary focuses on comedian and author David Baddiel and his dad Colin who has frontotemporal dementia (sometimes known as Pick’s disease). Next week, I’m visiting David and Colin whilst they’re filming the documentary. David has asked me to take some products which might benefit his dad and with help from our brilliant intern Melissa, I’ve selected a range which I hope they’ll both like.
I had dinner with my mentor Julie Fawcett, who is managing director of Qbic Hotels. Julie was part of the team that helped me build the business model for Unforgettable three years ago when she was working at our investor, Bridges Ventures. I try to meet up with her every three months to get an external view of the business and where it’s going. Julie is an inspiring, positive business woman and she’s confident that our business will dramatically change pace once our catalogue has launched – let’s hope she’s right again!
Spent a lot of time studying legal contracts, including a new contract for our product development manager, the contract for our new office and all the documents relating to our new Power of Attorney service we’re about to launch. I then had a great meeting with Alex from Designability, discussing the future of day clocks.
Later, I called a range of key potential big customers, including care homes and NHS and private hospitals, who are all interested in buying our products. Then I had a meeting with the celebrity liaison team at the Alzheimer’s Society to talk about our potential event in September.
I was contacted by Mandy Waites from Nuffield Hospital who is putting together dementia kits for patients who have the condition. This means if someone with dementia is admitted, their room can be kitted out with a Day Clock, appropriate crockery and cutlery, and activities and games. Mandy has done a fantastic job of choosing the products and wants to have these kits available in all Nuffield hospitals, which sounds very forward thinking.
Finally, I signed off Unforgettable’s first brochure, it’s a small 16-page sample of the bigger catalogue we’re currently working on, and it’s looking really good.
Following some positive meetings with Lloyds Pharmacy, we started compiling a list of our top 20 dementia products we’d like to see available on the high street. Then David and I went off to another investor presentation, this one was with Big issue Invest. When I first entered the social enterprise sector I had a work placement with Big Issue Invest so coming back to present to the company now, as prospective investors, was like coming a full circle – and fortunately the meeting went very well.
Unfortunately the rest of the afternoon didn’t go quite so well. After another meeting which ran late, I went back to the office to find myself locked out. Worse though, my wallet was inside – and I was going on a short holiday the next day! Thankfully I have some very kind friends who allowed me to keep borrowing off them while we were away…promise I’ll pay you all back guys!
I was interested to hear that the money for the Nuffield hospital dementia kits actually came from the makers of Emmerdale. The TV soap currently features a very harrowing story line about vicar Ashley Thomas (John Middleton) who has vascular dementia. A recent scene was filmed in a Nuffield hospital and the hospital decided to use its location fee to pay for dementia equipment. Emmerdale is really helping to raise awareness of dementia with this thoughtful story line so well done to everyone involved. Maybe a TV soap, like a social business, can be a force for good?